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Microsoft Corporate Forum

Microsoft Proposing To Buy Yahoo Search?
Receptional Andy

 9:24 pm on May 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

System: The following 3 messages were cut out of thread at: http://www.webmasterworld.com/yahoo-corp/3653245.htm [webmasterworld.com] by engine - 11:23 am on May 20, 2008 <small>(utc +1)</small>

According to Reuters today [reuters.com] MS are considering buying just the search portion of Yahoo, which would be an interesting move.

Microsoft Corp has proposed to buy Yahoo Inc's search business and take a minority stake in the Web pioneer, stopping short of a full-out merger, a person familiar with the discussions said on Monday.

As part of the deal, Yahoo would sell its Asian assets including significant minority stakes in Yahoo Japan and China's Alibaba Group, while Microsoft would buy a chunk of what remains of the company, the source said.

[edited by: engine at 10:25 am (utc) on May 20, 2008]
[edit reason] added quote [/edit]



 2:04 am on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

Buying search sounds about right. MS is going nowhere with their existing search engine.


 2:26 am on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

I think Yahoo may have lost out on what they could have had, MS won't match their last bid...it can only be less. They bid them up, not giving them quite what they wanted, ...ditched the idea and all the Yahoo! shareholders went nuts! Good strategy actually, Now Yahoo may actually HAVE to take a closer look.


 11:30 am on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

So what does "buying their search" mean? Are they buying their search technology? Or are they buying the right to put their Live search box on Yahoo properties? That would be more like a partnership.

[note: due to laziness, I did not read the article, so I apologize in advance if my question is redundant... ;-) ]


 1:59 pm on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

Microsoft and/or possibly MS's "proxies" have been acquiring search intellectual property, some IP less obvious than this but potentially equally landscape changing.

Would anyone be surprised if future of search wars include patent wars?

What surprises me is that there haven't been more search technology battles. I suspect a number of potential challenges have never come to light due to quiet acquisitions.


 2:05 pm on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

if that's the case, doesn't yahoo have oodles of patents?


 2:06 pm on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

What's left from yahoo after their search is sold?

Answers, Mail and their verticals. What else am I missing?


 4:39 pm on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

I am not sure whether this is related or not but, have you had a chance to review Microsoft Search Server 2008 [microsoft.com] which was dicussed here [webmasterworld.com]. The express version is free for small to mid size businesses.

This seems direct knowledge gain to enhance both live search and enterprise search.


 5:45 pm on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

I found this interesting quote from 2004 where Ballmer is outlining their future in search... How times change...

Search obviously is an important area. It's an area where we had for a long time essentially built a search strategy based upon components that were to some large degree outsourced. Itís probably the thing that I feel worst about over the last several years -- us not making the R&D investment ourselves up front, but rather outsourcing. Itís funny, people sometimes say Microsoft wants to do it all. This is a case where we actually didnít do it all. Shoot, I wish we had done it all.
There's no magic in a sense about search. I just looked at the cover of this most recent Newsweek with the picture of the Google guys and you would think there was some magic looking at the cover of Newsweek, but there's no magic here.
With the kind of stuff we have in this company Ė hardcore software developers Ė weíll be able to do very, very, very, very well, and we are committed to doing very, very, very well. I think youíll see a lot of really good competition in the search area.



 5:55 pm on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

What else am I missing?

Yahoo games and Yahoo fantasy sports are both huge.


 8:01 pm on May 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

Good going there: buy a big chunk of code, and hope it keeps on working. Weird strategy.


 10:05 am on May 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

flickr, the #1 in image/photography social network
yahoo finance is also huge, alot of investors use it, yahoo messenger is in the top 3 biggest IMs, yahoo news, yahoo movies, and their yahoo small biz services is doing quite well (e.g: hosting, they have a few million domains, think a few million x $10/mo)


 10:13 am on May 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

yeap yahoo is far better than msn in search even I like the yahoo mail too


[edited by: engine at 11:28 am (utc) on May 21, 2008]
[edit reason] TOS [/edit]


 2:31 pm on May 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

So far for MSFT doing an independent strategy.


 9:42 am on May 22, 2008 (gmt 0)

Could they buy Yahoo videos & stick some ads on them? Google is trying....


 9:47 am on May 22, 2008 (gmt 0)

So far for MSFT doing an independent strategy.

They rarely do...they didn't even create Hotmail.

I can see M$ buying Yahoo's search and display ads, with some kind of revenue sharing between them. This would turn Yahoo more into a publishing company, freeing themselves from having to sell and serve ads.


 12:46 am on May 23, 2008 (gmt 0)

Regardless of who created what, the acquisition of Hotmail was a good strategic corporate move. Yahoo's search properties could be a good investment as well.

Yahoo's Overture / PPC product is a bit of a dog though. Although I've used it since the product was known as GoTo (Yahoo didn't create that either) , the usability of the product is not very good, and the ROI is questionable. It might reinvigorate MS's PPC though.

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